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organic compound

compounds containing the element carbon


compounds made up of C and H



saturated hydrocarbons

A hydrocarbon in which all the bonds between carbon atoms are single bonds.


compounds with identical chemical formulas but different molecular structures and shapes


right and left-handed isomers; mirror images of each other; can have identical physical properties

unsaturated hydrocarbon

Compound, such as ethene or ethyne, that contains at least one double or triple bond between carbon atoms

compounds ending in -ane

single bonds, saturated hydrocarbon

compounds ending in -ene

double bonds, unsaturated hydrocarbon

compounds ending in -yne

triple bonds, unsaturated hydrocarbon

aromatic compound

a compound that contains a benzene structure having a ring with 6 carbons; most have a distinct odor

benzene ring

a ring of six carbons joined with alternating double and single bonds (C6H6)

fused -ring structure

an aromatic compound that is made up of two or more benzene rings fused together


an aromatic compound with 10 carbon atoms and 8 hydrogen atoms; 2 benzene fused-ring structure; used in moth balls

substituted hydrocarbon

a hydrocarbon in which one or more hydrogen atoms have been replaced by atoms of other elements


a hydrocarbon in which one or more hydrogen atoms are replaced by an -OH group


C2H5OH; grain alcohol that comes from corn

carboxyl group

-COOH; found in organic acids


an oily, dark-colored, flammable liquid found in the earth, consisting mainly of a mixture of various hydrocarbons.

fractional distillation

The process by which petroleum can be separated into simpler components, called fractions, as they condense at different boiling points

fractionating tower

big metal towers used in petroleum refineries to separate petroleum into fractions by their boiling points


A large molecule consisting of many identical or similar molecular units, called monomers, covalently joined together in a chain.


smaller molecular units that join together to form polymers


polymer formed from a chain containing many ethylene units; used in plastic bags and bottles


polymer used in the making of glue and carpets


polymer used in foam cups and packing peanuts


process using heat or chemicals to break a polymer chain into its monomers


large organic polymers formed from organic monomers called amino acids; make up many body tissues such as hair, muscles, tendons, and hemoglobin; 15% of total body weight comes from protein

amino acids

the monomers that combine to form proteins' your body breaks protein into amino acids and then uses the amino acids to build the protein you need


a protein polymer that carries oxygen in your blood, it contains four peptide chains coiled around each other; each chain has an atom of iron


a compound containing two or more amino acids in which the carboxyl group of one acid is linked to the amino group of the other.

nucleic acid

essential organic polymers that control the activities and reproduction of cells


nucleic acid built of complex molecules called nucleotides; found in the cell nucleus; it codes and stores genetic information and controls the production of RNA

4 base pairs of DNA

adenine and thymine
cystosine and guanine


ribonucleic acid; a nucleic acid that plays an important role in the production of protei


compounds containing carbon, hydrogen and oxygen; twice as many hydrogen atoms as oxygen atoms; ex. sugars and starches


carbohydrates that provide your body quick energy
ex. sucrose, fructose, glucose


carbohydrate of large polymers built of sugar units; provides long-lasting energy


biological compounds containing the same elements of carbohydrates but in different arrangements and combinations; includes fats and oils


unsaturated fat having one double bond ex. olive oil


unsaturated fat having two or more double bonds


found in meats, eggs, butter and cheese; it is a lipid but not a fat; your body produces it in the liver; it is a precursor of many hormones


chemical used in communication among individuals of the same species


sugar found in RNA

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